Welcome to Universal Judaism Blog and Forum


Universal Judaism teaches a new way, thoroughly contemporary, without the superstitions and religious prejudices of the past. It is for all people, Jewish or not, theist, agnostic or atheist, who are interested in core teachings of the Hebrew People that were bequeathed to Judaism, Christianity, Islam, and today’s global secular culture.


Are you observant?


Universal Judaism is for all those who are observant, but in the more original sense of the word.(1)


Universal Judaism is scientific:


The observation of our world and the search for a “Unified Truth” is the foundation of all scientific thinking and theorizing. Obviously, this is inseparable from any knowledge of any “One God” (Dt. 6:4) Who is “Abundant in Truth”(Ex. 34:7)


Universal Judaism is for all those who consider a clear-minded, unbiased, objective, observation of our world to be an impartial foundation to human knowledge. This is the Truth-foundation upon which all true teachings, tradition, customs, religious-beliefs, ethnic identities or even scripture and its interpretations are based. After all, everything we know comes from the human observation through our experience of Life. Indeed, the scientific word “experiment” comes from the same root as the word “experience”. All our knowledge could be said to be an experiment with, or an experience of, Life.


That’s why Universal Judaism has no conflict between objective science and so-called “religion”. It has no conflict between “tradition” and “modern”. It is Truth-based.(2)



Universal Judaism is spiritual:


Objective spiritual knowledge is also a science. The word “science” comes from the Latin root, meaning “knowing”. Universal Judaism could be said to be a “spiritual science”.


The observation of our Life experience is what produces spiritual insights and knowledge. Those who are spiritually observant can witness objective principles, rules, “laws” that are “built into” Life, and are necessary for the human spiritual experience of GOOD. Let us not forget that the word “God” is just a contraction of the word “Good”.


Universal Judaism teaches a simple methodology– for those as young as 5 years old, and as old as humanly possible– that allow anyone to observe the spiritual “facts” about “How Life Works”. The true “torah”, from the Hebrew word meaning “teaching”, is truly, built into Life; any scripture is essentially a recording of this knowledge framed for a different time and place; this is why it is not “absolute”, and must always be re-interpreted.


Universal Judaism is secular:


Today’s world is predominantly secular. This is not a mistake. This is an advance. Yet, it is also a curious “Return to Genesis” so to speak; after all, the first chapter of Genesis is, essentially, “secular” and “scientific” in its viewpoint, “non-religious” and “de-mythologized”.(3) This is the naked foundation to Life, as any observant person can see.


Whether you are so-called “religious” or not, a daily life that is lived according to the best, the noblest, the healthiest, with the most lovingly-kind and just values is the essence of what it means to be “human”. This is also the essence of what the Hebrew People have always been about, and what they bequeathed to Judaism, Christianity, Islam and today’s global secular world culture.


It can be easily observed that “God” is not more present in “religious” life, than “secular” life. This distinction is, today, spiritually meaningless. A “Good” religious life, and a “Good” secular, are no less “Godly”, though they may differ in modes of expression.


So, if you have no desire to be “religious”, no guilt is needed here. Religious guilt is a psychological poison that actually prevents an individual from experiencing Good or God. It is hurtful. It is wrongful to the human spirit.


Universal Judaism is individualistic:


While there are, truly, Universal Teachings critical to all humankind, every single culture, every single religion, every single person, people or indeed, creature, is unique.


Universal Judaism does not believe that “universal” means “ubiquitous”, that every single individual must be the exact same way. This does not accord with a clear-minded observation of our world, and it is religious insanity.


Nor, does Universal Judaism, put all beliefs, nationalities, religions and philosophical systems in a “cuisinart”, blend them up and serve them as “universal”. Such syncretism is dangerous to the integrity and identity of each of us. While holding to the living experience of One Universal Truth– The very Principle of Unity(4)– we celebrate, unabashedly, diversity within our ranks and within the world. Any “God” Who is “One” is not a God of “uniformity”.


Today, often without realizing it, many people are re-discovering the universal truths of the Hebrew people. We are discovering the critical importance of rest (the sabbath?) of healthy eating (kosher?) of ecological integrity (the sacredness of Our Land?), and the correct place for human-invented institutions and economic systems (Righteousness?)


Today, we are discovering the value of education, of contribution to the world, of a Unified World View, which are hallmarks of Hebrew thought and Life.



We are truly re-discovering these new/ancient insights through our “scientific method”. We are re-discovering these through our particular “religious method”, Jewish or not. We are discovering this through spiritual practices and disciplines– like meditation and yoga– that have never been so popularized. And, we are discovering this through critical thought, leading to a more purified philosophical insight, because it is based on objective scientific observation, not mere “belief” or “faith”.


That is why, in this era of Freedom, The Association for Universal Judaism, believes it is time to step out from the shadow of the past and teach openly, without fear, to all good people who are willing to hear, regardless of age, educational background or religious affiliation, circumcised or not.


It is time to, once again, for the Hebrew People to be, openly, a Light unto all the nations of the world! (Isaiah 49:6) All the nations of the world, including the Modern State of Israel, and any eventual Palestine, need these teachings.(See history)


To do the Good and the Beautiful (5), together, yet, each in their our uniquely-inspired way. To continue the original unique mission of history that began with the Hebrew People:


This is the spiritual essence of Universal Judaism. (6)

And check out our website:  www.universaljudaism.org


(1) With thanks to my dear friend and colleague, David Stoller, for his brilliant Spinozist insight.

(2) With the deepest love for Rabbi Jack Bemporad, and also for Rabbi Robert Widom and the late Rabbi Barry Friedman. Thank you all for your gift to me.

(3)   With a debt to the great Hans Jonas for this profound insight.

(4)   With the deepest love and devotion to the late Professor Ellis Rivkin, for his friendship, his counsel, and his “Unity Principle”. See The Shaping of Jewish History, by Ellis Rivkin. Behrman House, 1971. www.rivkinsociety.org

(5) With great admiration for the late Rabbi Joseph Gelberman, a true visionary.

(6) For David Waterman, Nelson Rose, Henkka Kiviniemi and many others around the world, who have encourage me in this project.

11 Responses to Home

  • Shalom,
    my name’s Philipe and I’m from Brazil. As the description above, I’m a former Christian, raised in Catolicism, but came a time when I couldn’t

  • Hello,
    my name’s Philipe and I’m from Brazil. As the description above, I’m a former Christian, raised in Catolicism, but came a time when I couldn’t believe any more in the Trinity. Then I found Judaism, and I’m studied a lot everything I can about Judaism. There aren’t many synagogues here, so it’s been really hard to me to know more abou Judaism. And I really think that Universal Judaism is good. However, I want to learn more about it. Could you help me, please?

  • Si, posso ajudar voce! Otimo!! Mais e dificil. “Judaism” e muito diverso; tive diferente “modos” de practicar!

    Phillipe—- I’m happy to talk to you in person, by phone or by skype. Send me your contact information!!!



  • Shalom,
    I am very much interested to study “Universal Judaism” in deep….where can I do this?
    kind regards

    • Hi Michael,

      Right now, I have no formal institutions, though very real plans are in the works.
      I think it is best that you contact me at the e-mail above— universaljudaism@comcast.net

      I have many students, around the world, and it is best for me to gauge who you are as a person, and then proceed. Every person has a different doorway to Hebrew thought, and I need to know who you are.

      Looking forward to it.


      Michael Shevack

  • Shalom,
    my question is how is a synagogue in Universal Judaism different from
    one in Reform Judaism? How does the service run, if different in which way is it different?
    Kind regards

  • The previous synagogue— gathering place— was useful for bringing the community together in devotion to the ideal of the God of History, and also for preserving Jewish culture after the Roman invasion. The first aspect of the Universal Judaism synagogue can be preserved with suitable changes for a different spiritual viewpoint. However, the second requires a larger vision.

    We are no longer keeping the Torah raised high, hoping for the return of Jews to their land and their sovereignty, with the hopes of rebuilding the pre-Roman-destroyed Temple, and reconstitute animal sacrifice again.

    There IS an Israel now. It is mostly secular! While there will be many who are still attached to the worship forms of the past— and there will always be a place for such worship forms in the Assn.— as well as a place for others who worship differently— we must now look to a more Universal viewpoint, for a world where Israel’s sovereignty in the world of nations, exists.

    Universal Judaism’s synagogue would primarily be a spiritual university culture and secondarily, a worship structure. Western civilization was very Greco-Roman, although they borrowed their sacred history from the Jews. It is time to restore the root to Western civilization in a way that does not despise the Jew, or diminish their law, nor mis-interpret the One God.

    These days, Western (Christian dominant) countries have evolved in their own independent way to reclaim many of the essential Hebrew teachings regarding agriculture, slavery, and political structure. Because of that, Jews can intermingle nicely within these countries where Hebrew principles reign. At the same time, modern and post-modern political philosophies have affected Jewish culture, and the laws of the modern state of Israel is not merely “Jewish”, but have embodied the best of the West.

    There are also philosophical differences, from a Jewish perspective, which change how mathematics, politics, economics and history should be taught and understood, as a Unified Knowledge.

    In the Universal Judaism synagogue, there would be departments to teach a correct Universal-Jewish (purified Western) view of how human life should be conducted. We’re talking Unified Knowledge, framed to be consistent with core Hebrew values and concepts. This is a reclamation of Western history, with a solid contemporary Universal Jewish perspective. It’s purpose is to teach not just Jews, but all Hebrew-based religions! Christianity. Islam. And our world global secular culture!

    In addition, the Universal Judaism synagogue would teach a scientific spirituality— a re-stage of the Reform Wissenschaft— that opens people up to the experience-of-Good, or God. This will be supplemented by meditation and many healing arts. Worship is secondary to spiritual experience, because spiritual experience IS the answer to worship!

    There are many who have found profound insights in other religions and spiritual disciplines, because their “judaism” had become overly controlled, authoritarian and a little “OCD”. This spiritual knowledge, reconfigured according to Universal Jewish principles, can be brought back into the synagogue. For instance, Gabriel Cousens, M.D., a rabbi and psychiatrist, has already taken on the role of Director for Medical Spirituality. Reclaiming the Jewish spiritual-healing tradition, and evolving it, is an important role in a scientific spirituality.

    In Israel today, the secularized are turning to Buddhism, Yoga, Scientology, and many other practices, because there is no contemporary Jewish spiritual alternative. The default setting is Orthodox.
    This needs to change.

    Israel was a MODERN state. There is plenty of room for those who, in faith, hold to their ways. But, the vast majority of Jews, in Europe, in Israel, and the U.S. are contemporary and secular. And modern is out-dated. The paradigm is now post-modern (which is remarkably ancient!!!)

    The Universal Judaism synagogue is designed for them!!!!

    And, let me be daring: An appropriate Hebrew-based view of Jesus, is not a threat. Within this university structure, there may be separate groups, with separate worships for their more “christianized” version of Universal Judaism. This is no threat to identity. It is simply an alternative eschatology and metaphysics. The essence of Universal Judaism is identical. This is no more threatening than an atheist circle, or a humanist circle. After all, isn’t atheism just a denial of a stupid way to think about God? In that sense it is authentic prophetic insight: non-idolatry.

    A God who is Truth— never fully knowable by us— is not a threat. Because we all must be humble.
    Our pronouncement of truth are relative to that, not relative to each other’s arrogances, as in ages past!!

    Because we are dealing with a scientific spirituality, which is described first through Universal Knowledge, and then secondarily qualified for different human viewpoints, there is no contradiction. Just learning!

    The living experience of Good, or of God, is identical! The rest is description and purpose.

    The Universal Judaism synagogue is a paradigm of a new and better world. Sharing the Hebrew root!
    Expressing the essence, together. But, also permitting differences as part of the delight of the Universal Judaism approach.

    This is fitting today, when Jews and Christians are inter-marrying, and both have little understanding of the meaning of their faith, but just have sentimental attachments: to menorah’s or to trees!!!

    I hope this helps begin an answer to your question. Ask more, if you wish.

    And let’s build this. It must be built, I think, in England first!!! As a doorway to a “Jewish” Universal perspective!!

  • Shalom,
    what you think about this:

    Orthodox Rabbinic Statement on Christianity

    December 3, 2015

    To Do the Will of Our Father in Heaven:
    Toward a Partnership between Jews and Christians

    After nearly two millennia of mutual hostility and alienation, we Orthodox Rabbis who lead communities, institutions and seminaries in Israel, the United States and Europe recognize the historic opportunity now before us. We seek to do the will of our Father in Heaven by accepting the hand offered to us by our Christian brothers and sisters. Jews and Christians must work together as partners to address the moral challenges of our era.

    The Shoah ended 70 years ago. It was the warped climax to centuries of disrespect, oppression and rejection of Jews and the consequent enmity that developed between Jews and Christians. In retrospect it is clear that the failure to break through this contempt and engage in constructive dialogue for the good of humankind weakened resistance to evil forces of anti-Semitism that engulfed the world in murder and genocide.
    We recognize that since the Second Vatican Council the official teachings of the Catholic Church about Judaism have changed fundamentally and irrevocably. The promulgation of Nostra Aetate fifty years ago started the process of reconciliation between our two communities. Nostra Aetate and the later official Church documents it inspired unequivocally reject any form of anti-Semitism, affirm the eternal Covenant between G-d and the Jewish people, reject deicide and stress the unique relationship between Christians and Jews, who were called “our elder brothers” by Pope John Paul II and “our fathers in faith” by Pope Benedict XVI. On this basis, Catholics and other Christian officials started an honest dialogue with Jews that has grown during the last five decades. We appreciate the Church’s affirmation of Israel’s unique place in sacred history and the ultimate world redemption. Today Jews have experienced sincere love and respect from many Christians that have been expressed in many dialogue initiatives, meetings and conferences around the world.
    As did Maimonides and Yehudah Halevi,[1] we acknowledge that Christianity is neither an accident nor an error, but the willed divine outcome and gift to the nations. In separating Judaism and Christianity, G-d willed a separation between partners with significant theological differences, not a separation between enemies. Rabbi Jacob Emden wrote that “Jesus brought a double goodness to the world. On the one hand he strengthened the Torah of Moses majestically… and not one of our Sages spoke out more emphatically concerning the immutability of the Torah. On the other hand he removed idols from the nations and obligated them in the seven commandments of Noah so that they would not behave like animals of the field, and instilled them firmly with moral traits…..Christians are congregations that work for the sake of heaven who are destined to endure, whose intent is for the sake of heaven and whose reward will not denied.”[2] Rabbi Samson Raphael Hirsch taught us that Christians “have accepted the Jewish Bible of the Old Testament as a book of Divine revelation. They profess their belief in the G-d of Heaven and Earth as proclaimed in the Bible and they acknowledge the sovereignty of Divine Providence.”[3] Now that the Catholic Church has acknowledged the eternal Covenant between G-d and Israel, we Jews can acknowledge the ongoing constructive validity of Christianity as our partner in world redemption, without any fear that this will be exploited for missionary purposes. As stated by the Chief Rabbinate of Israel’s Bilateral Commission with the Holy See under the leadership of Rabbi Shear Yashuv Cohen, “We are no longer enemies, but unequivocal partners in articulating the essential moral values for the survival and welfare of humanity”.[4] Neither of us can achieve G-d’s mission in this world alone.
    Both Jews and Christians have a common covenantal mission to perfect the world under the sovereignty of the Almighty, so that all humanity will call on His name and abominations will be removed from the earth. We understand the hesitation of both sides to affirm this truth and we call on our communities to overcome these fears in order to establish a relationship of trust and respect. Rabbi Hirsch also taught that the Talmud puts Christians “with regard to the duties between man and man on exactly the same level as Jews. They have a claim to the benefit of all the duties not only of justice but also of active human brotherly love.” In the past relations between Christians and Jews were often seen through the adversarial relationship of Esau and Jacob, yet Rabbi Naftali Zvi Berliner (Netziv) already understood at the end of the 19th century that Jews and Christians are destined by G-d to be loving partners: “In the future when the children of Esau are moved by pure spirit to recognize the people of Israel and their virtues, then we will also be moved to recognize that Esau is our brother.”[5]
    We Jews and Christians have more in common than what divides us: the ethical monotheism of Abraham; the relationship with the One Creator of Heaven and Earth, Who loves and cares for all of us; Jewish Sacred Scriptures; a belief in a binding tradition; and the values of life, family, compassionate righteousness, justice, inalienable freedom, universal love and ultimate world peace. Rabbi Moses Rivkis (Be’er Hagoleh) confirms this and wrote that “the Sages made reference only to the idolator of their day who did not believe in the creation of the world, the Exodus, G-d’s miraculous deeds and the divinely given law. In contrast, the people among whom we are scattered believe in all these essentials of religion.”[6]
    Our partnership in no way minimizes the ongoing differences between the two communities and two religions. We believe that G-d employs many messengers to reveal His truth, while we affirm the fundamental ethical obligations that all people have before G-d that Judaism has always taught through the universal Noahide covenant.
    In imitating G-d, Jews and Christians must offer models of service, unconditional love and holiness. We are all created in G-d’s Holy Image, and Jews and Christians will remain dedicated to the Covenant by playing an active role together in redeeming the world.
    Initial signatories (in alphabetical order):

    Rabbi Jehoshua Ahrens (Germany)
    Rabbi Marc Angel (United States)
    Rabbi Isak Asiel (Chief Rabbi of Serbia)
    Rabbi David Bigman (Israel)
    Rabbi David Bollag (Switzerland)
    Rabbi David Brodman (Israel)
    Rabbi Natan Lopez Cardozo (Israel)
    Rav Yehudah Gilad (Israel)
    Rabbi Alon Goshen-Gottstein (Israel)
    Rabbi Irving Greenberg (United States)
    Rabbi Marc Raphael Guedj (Switzerland)
    Rabbi Eugene Korn (Israel)
    Rabbi Daniel Landes (Israel)
    Rabbi Steven Langnas (Germany)
    Rabbi Benjamin Lau (Israel)
    Rabbi Simon Livson (Chief Rabbi of Finland)
    Rabbi Asher Lopatin (United States)
    Rabbi Shlomo Riskin (Israel)
    Rabbi David Rosen (Israel)
    Rabbi Naftali Rothenberg (Israel)
    Rabbi Hanan Schlesinger (Israel)
    Rabbi Shmuel Sirat (France)
    Rabbi Daniel Sperber (Israel)
    Rabbi Jeremiah Wohlberg (United States)
    Rabbi Alan Yuter (Israel)

    Subsequent signatories:

    Rabbi Herzl Hefter (Israel)
    Rabbi David Jaffe (USA)
    Rabbi David Kalb (USA)
    Rabbi Shaya Kilimnick (USA)
    Rabbi Yehoshua Looks (Israel)
    Rabbi Ariel Mayse (USA)
    Rabbi David Rose (UK)
    Rabbi Zvi Solomons (UK)
    Rabbi Yair Silverman (Israel)
    Rabbi Daniel Raphael Silverstein (USA)
    Rabbi Lawrence Zierler (USA)

    Kind regards
    Rev. Michael

  • Thank you so very much for spreading the great news of this Orthodox statement. My reaction is, “Well, it is about time!”. There had been a goodly amount of reticence prior in the Orthodox community, because of deep, residual fears. In my work with Rabbi Bemporad & Rabbi Ehrenkranz, at the Center for Christian-Jewish Dialogue at Sacred Heart University (I was director of Communications), we began opening and spreading this new good-news!!!!

    I believe that Christendom, because it was Roman, continued much of the anti-Jewishness of ancient Rome, and that after Hitler, who himself attempted to resurrect the pagan Roman empire, all Christians of good nations, heirs to Rome, needed to repent of the sin of their ancestors, and thus brought Israel into existence again.

    Now, however, the sins of Rome against Islam, and the consequent sin of Jews contaminated by the modernism which is itself a branching-off of Christendom, need to be purged. For those who think that the whirlwind we are experiencing with Islam, however horrific and terrifying, is truly hopeless— allow me to give you another viewpoint.

    It is the tumultuous sign that the healing between the Roman Church and Judaism— with its ancestral arrogances on both sides—- is picking up speed, and now spreading, not merely between Esau (Rome) and Jacob (Israel, pun intended), but between Isaac and Ishmael.

    There is great beauty happening, but, as with all births, it is not without pain and a bit of bloodshed.

    In this spirit of Light, please take to heart these words, and spread them.

    For those who are interested in a brief summary of Nostra Aetate, No. 4, and the Church’s Declaration of towards the Jewish People, which set this powerful reconciliation in motion, please contact NEW CITY PRESS, and if you care to, order: Our Age. The Historic New Era of Jewish Christian Understanding, by Rabbis Jack Bemporad and (moi) Michael Shevack. It will give you a solid, simple background on this.

    Blessings to all, in the name of that God who is greater than all our theologies!!!!!

  • Ludwik’s God-related Kindle book was published yesterday.It is free online at:



    Please share these links with all who might be intersted,

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